Letter: Lord Radice obituary

<span>Photograph: Murdo Macleod/The Guardian</span>
Photograph: Murdo Macleod/The Guardian

My friend Giles Radice can fairly be described as “the [Labour] party’s outstanding rightwing intellectual of his age” but because of his commitment to the rights of working people, he was open-minded and never sectarian.

In the 1960s he supported the introduction of a national minimum wage when it was little more than an outlandish demand by the left. In the 70s he worked hard to persuade the Callaghan government to put workers on company boards when rightwing cabinet members wanted none of it; in the 80s he attacked the Thatcher government’s anti-trade union legislation and in the 90s he was keen to persuade the Blair government to recognise trade unions as social partners.

Giles knew the Labour party needed to modernise but he understood that it must keep its focus on improving the lives of working people. For that commitment and for much else, trade union and Labour party members have good reason to honour his memory.